Whether you're starting a new PTO or your current group needs some re-organization, these sample Bylaws will help.
The following PTO Bylaws have been prepared as a SAMPLE. These may be adapted to your own group. This document may not be all-inclusive and your final bylaws should be reviewed by a professional. We suggest consulting with the head of your school or any other essential professional.
Sample PTO Bylaws
ARTICLE I - NAME
The organization shall be named (School Name) Parent-Teacher Organization (PTO); herein referred to as the PTO.
ARTICLE II - MISSION STATEMENT
The PTO is organized for the purpose of supporting and enhancing the educational experiences of the School's students by:
- providing an organization through which the parents, school, and teachers can work cooperatively; and
- providing financial support for programs funded outside of the annual school budget.
ARTICLE III - POLICIES
Section 1: The PTO shall operate for charitable, educational, nonpartisan, non-sectarian, and non-commercial purposes and shall not discriminate based on age, sex, creed, or national origin.
Section 2: The policies of the PTO are established to maintain a tax-exempt status as defined by Section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.
Section 3: The name of the PTO and the names of any of its members in their official capacities shall not be used in any connection with a commercial concern or political interest or for any purpose not appropriately related to the Mission of the PTO.
Section 4: The PTO may cooperate with other PTOs within the same school district that have similar goals and interests, but shall not interfere with the administration of these schools or seek to control its policies.
Section : Any person volunteering at a PTO event or serving in an official PTO position must have an approved CORI check prior to volunteering.
ARTICLE IV - FISCAL YEAR
The fiscal year of the PTO shall begin on July 1st and end on the following June 30th.
ARTICLE V - MEMBERSHIP & DUES
Section 1: Membership. Any parent or guardian of a student at the School, the Principal, or any teacher currently employed at the School may become a PTO Member.
Section 2: Dues. Each member shall pay annual membership dues of FIVE DOLLARS ($5.00) to the PTO. Only members in good standing (who have paid their annual dues at least 14 calendar days prior to a PTO meeting) shall be eligible to vote or serve on the Executive Board. Dues paid shall be good through the current fiscal year of the PTO which shall end on June 30th.
Section 3: Vote. Each individual, paying member shall have one vote. Voting may take place by voice or, upon request, by written ballot.
ARTICLE VI - OFFICERS
Section 1: Officers. The Officers shall consist of an elected President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. The position of President, may be a shared position between two individuals, thus acting equally as Co-Presidents.
Section 2: Eligibility. Only Members in good standing (who have paid their annual dues at least 14 calendar days prior to a PTO meeting) shall be eligible to serve in any Officer position.
Section 3: Nominations & Elections. Nominations for Officers' positions shall be submitted at the April PTO meeting by the Nominating Committee. At this meeting, additional nominations may also be made by the PTO membership.
Section 4: Term of Service. Voting shall take place by written ballot at the May PTO meeting. Officers shall be elected for a term of one calendar year (beginning July 1st and ending on the following June 30th) by the general PTO Membership. An individual may not serve more than two consecutive years as an Officer. A person may hold only one Officer's position at a time. An Officer may also act as Chair of up to two Standing Committees.
Section 5: In the event the PTO fails to fill all Officer positions at the May PTO meeting, the incumbent of the expiring term may remain in office for one additional school year or until an election of a new official at any regular meeting. The incumbent may not remain in an official position for two additional years.
Section 6: All Officers shall act in the best interest of the PTO.
Section 7: Compensation. No Officer shall be compensated by the PTO for their service.
Section 8: Attendance. Each Officer shall attend the Executive Board and monthly PTO meetings.
Section 9: Committee Service. Each Officer is expected to serve on a minimum of one committee.
Section 10: Contracts & Purchases. No Officer shall secure any contract in the name of the PTO without the approval to do so by vote of the PTO members. Any approved purchases must be made within the budgetary restrictions.
Section 11: Removal from Office. Any Officer can be removed from office, with or without cause, by a two-thirds vote at a regular PTO meeting. Advance notice of the vote shall be given to the PTO Membership at least one week prior to the meeting.
Section 12: Each Officer shall assist in the nomination of incoming Chairpersons of the Standing Committees.
ARTICLE VII - OFFICER DUTIES
Section 1: President
The President(s) shall:
Section 2: Vice President
- Preside over all meetings of the PTO.
- Prepare each meeting's agenda.
- Be a member, ex officio of all committees, except a committee to elect the Executive Board.
- Represent the PTO at city-wide meetings or other meetings outside of the organization.
- Assist in the total coordination of all committees and the PTO as a whole.
- Spend no more than $100 on any one item or combination of related items, not included in the budget, without the consent of the general membership.
- Sign checks, notes, etc. in the absence of the Treasurer.
- Appoint Special Committees as needed.
- Announce PTO meetings to the School population at least one week in advance of that meeting.
The Vice President shall:
Section 3: Secretary
- Perform the duties of the President in his/her absence, resignation, or inability to serve.
- Assist the Principal with the preparation and distribution of the School handbook.
- Research, write, and solicit educational grants.
- Act as Chairperson of the Fundraising Committee
The Secretary shall:
Section 4: Treasurer
- Maintain all records of the PTO, including transactions, contracts, correspondence, and related documents.
- Record the minutes of the meetings of the Executive Board and PTO and forward copies to each Executive Board member within two weeks of the recorded meeting.
- Circulate the minutes from the preceding PTO meeting at each monthly PTO meeting
- Maintain organized records from the planning of any event hosted by the PTO. These records should be kept in a secure location at the School, should be made available, upon request, to any Committee Chair planning a similar event, and turned over to the next Secretary to hold this position.
- Attend to the official correspondence of the PTO, including, but not limited to, gestures of appreciation and sympathy on behalf of the PTO.
- Hold a copy of the PTO Bylaws, Parliamentary Procedures, and current Membership list and make each available upon request to any PTO Member at any PTO or Executive Board meeting.
- Provide a printed copy of these Bylaws to each newly elected Executive Board member prior to the first regular PTO meeting.
- Oversee the Publicity and Web Communication Chair.
The Treasurer shall:
- Act as custodian of funds and perform all banking activities of the PTO.
- Maintain up-to-date, accurate financial records of the PTO.
- Receive all funds of the PTO; including, but not limited to, donations, dues, and fundraising sales and contributions.
- Provide a written and oral financial report of the receipts and expenditures at each PTO and Executive Board meeting and at other times upon request of the Executive Board.
- Audit all invoices and receipts submitted for payment or reimbursement to ensure each request is in compliance with PTO policies. Pay all bills and disburse funds as authorized by the Executive Board.
- Perform the complete and timely filing of all federal and state tax returns as well as other financial reports, pertaining to the PTO's 501(c)3 status, as applicable; and maintain accurate records of such.
- Complete all financial updates by the close of the Fiscal Year and provide a full year-end report.
- Submit all requested/required financial data relating to PTO operations to the Finance Audit Committee Chair within two weeks prior to the close of the fiscal year, for the purposes of the Treasurer's accounts being audited by the Finance Audit Committee.
ARTICLE VIII - EXECUTIVE BOARD
Section 1: Executive Board. The Executive Board shall consist of the Officers, the School Principal, a Teacher Representative, and the Chairpersons of any Standing Committees.
Section 2: Principal & Teacher Representative. The Principal and the Teacher Representative are not required to pay annual Dues and shall each have one vote. The Principal acts as liaison between the School and the PTO and ensures that all PTO activities are in accordance with School policies and procedures. The Teacher Representative acts as liaison between the School teachers and the PTO.
Section 3: Duties. The Executive Board shall conduct necessary business in preparation for the Regular PTO meetings and shall prepare a proposed budget to be voted upon by the PTO Membership at the first regular PTO meeting of the fiscal year.
ARTICLE IX - MEETINGS
Section 1: Regular Meetings of the PTO - Shall be held monthly, except during July and August, at the School, on a date and time pre-established by the Executive Board. Dates and times of the monthly meetings shall be presented by the President at the first regular meeting of the school year.
Section 2: Executive Board Meetings - Shall be held no less than quarterly on a date mutually agreed upon by the Officers.
Section 3: Special Meetings of the PTO - May be called at any time during the school year by the President or upon the written request to the Secretary of at least five (5) PTO members in good standing. The objective(s) of such Special meeting must be set forth and presented to the PTO membership at least 10 days prior to the meeting.
Section 4: Quorum. At least 10% of the PTO Membership shall constitute a quorum. A quorum must be met in order for any vote to take place.
Section 5: The newly elected Executive Board shall meet at least once between July 1st and the first PTO meeting of the upcoming fiscal year for the purposes of preparing a balanced budget proposal which shall be presented at that first regular PTO meeting of the school year. A vote shall be taken at the first regular PTO meeting as to either accept or amend the Executive Board's proposed budget..
Section 6: The final PTO meeting shall take place in June, prior to the close of school.
ARTICLE X - FUNDS
Section 1: Use. PTO funds shall be used for programs, events, and items, that directly benefit the students of the School; with the exceptions of the annual Teacher Appreciation Luncheon, Staff Holiday Gifts, and School Alumni Scholarship award.
Section 2: Income. All funds raised for the PTO must be documented and submitted to the PTO Treasurer within 10 days of receipt. All funds received by the Treasurer must be deposited into the PTO bank account within 4 days of receipt by the Treasurer. Separate deposit receipts should be maintained for funds received from each unique fundraising event.
Section 3: Expenses. Reimbursements for all expenses shall be made only after receipts for the expenditures have been audited, documented, and approved by the PTO Treasurer. Reimbursement requests should be submitted to the PTO Treasurer within 30 days of the incurred expense or by three weeks prior to the end of the fiscal year, whichever comes first, and must be accompanied by a receipt. Any cash advance to cover expenses prior to a purchase must be documented in detail. All unused funds must be returned to the PTO Treasurer immediately following the purchase.
Section 4: Non-Budgeted Requests. Monetary requests for non-budgeted items may be submitted to the PTO at a monthly PTO meeting by any PTO member in good standing. A vote for approval of the monetary disbursement shall be taken at the next scheduled meeting of the PTO. Advance notice of the upcoming vote shall be publicized to the PTO Membership at least 1 week prior to the vote.
Section 5: Reporting. An updated financial report shall be made available in printed form to each PTO member at each PTO meeting.
Section 6: Carry-Over. The PTO is authorized to carry over funds for the following fiscal year as recommended by the Executive Board. The annual carry-over amount shall not exceed $10,000.
ARTICLE XI - COMMITTEES
Section 1: Standing Committees. The following Standing Committees shall exist for the purpose of carrying out a specific set of relative duties: Fundraising, Enrichment, Social, Hospitality, Nominating, Publicity, Web Communication, Room Parent, Playground, Fifth Grade Activities, and Finance Audit. Additional Special committees may be formed at any time either at the request of the President or by a majority vote of the PTO membership.
Section 2: Chairpersons. Chairpersons of Standing Committees shall be elected annually by the PTO membership. Nominations shall be submitted at the April PTO meeting. Elections shall take place at the May PTO meeting. An Officer may also act as Chair of up to two Standing Committees.
Section 3: The Chairperson of each committee shall keep a written record of the activities of his/her committee in a manner that would allow these records to be passed along to future Chairs. These records should be turned over to the Secretary who will maintain a comprehensive file of all events planned by the PTO and make them available to future Chairs.
Section 4: Committee Members. Chairpersons may solicit and appoint additional members to serve on their respective committees as necessary.
Section 5: Contracts & Purchases. No Committee Chair shall secure any contract in the name of the PTO without the approval to do so by vote of the PTO members. Any approved purchases must be made within the budgetary restrictions.
Section 6: Term of Service. A person may not serve as the Chairperson of the same committee longer than two (2) consecutive years.
Section 7: Attendance. Committee Chairpersons shall attend Executive Board and monthly PTO meetings to report on the activities of his/her committee.
Section 8: Each Standing Committee Chair shall assist in the nomination of the incoming Chairperson of their respective committee.
ARTICLE XII - COMMITTEE DUTIES
Section 1: Fundraising Chair
The Fundraising Chair shall:
Section 2: Enrichment Chair
- Research options, plans, and anticipated profits and expenses for any fundraising projects and present suggestions to the Executive Board.
- Prepare and execute fundraising projects as approved by the Executive Board.
- Solicit volunteers to assist with each Fundraiser.
- Report all Fundraising activities, expenses, and profits at each monthly PTO meeting.
- Maintain confidential records of all contributions.
- Maintain planning records of each fundraiser and pass these along to the Secretary for permanent record keeping.
- Oversee and execute the Savings Programs (i.e. Box Tops, cartridges, GoodSearch, etc.).
The Enrichment Chair shall:
Section 3: Social Chair
- Coordinate educational enrichment programs for students in all grades.
- Work with the Principal and teachers to coordinate events that enhance current curriculum.
- Notify the Publicity Committee in advance of event dates for photo coverage.
- Write a summary of each event for publication in the newsletter or School website for the purposes of informing School parents that the event was sponsored by the PTO.
The Social Chair shall:
Section 4: Hospitality Chair
- Plan and implement all not-for-profit social activities for School students and their families; including, but not limited to, the Ice Cream Social, Spirit Days, and Student Holiday Workshop.
- Coordinate a monthly not-for-profit Fun Event for the students.
- Coordinate after-school programs (i.e. An Introduction to Sign Language; Crafts & More: Lego Engineers; Responsible Babysitting; etc.)
The Hospitality Chair shall:
Section 5: Nominating Chair
- Plan and serve refreshments at the monthly PTO meetings and other PTO functions.
- Coordinate the Teacher Appreciation luncheon, New Parent Breakfast, and Welcome Back Cookout.
The Nominating Chair shall:
Section 6: Publicity Chair
- Publicize PTO positions and recruit volunteers to fill open Executive Board positions for the upcoming school year.
- Work with the Executive Board and Committee Chairs to prepare a list of nominees to be included on the annual election ballot at the April PTO meeting. This list shall be completed and publicized to all PTO members two weeks prior to the April meeting.
The Publicity Chair shall:
Section 7: Room Parent Chair
- Attend School functions and events to take photos and write articles for submission to the local newspaper, School newsletter, and School website
- Decorate and maintain the PTO bulletin board in the School lobby to reflect a positive and informative display.
- Coordinate annual parental consent forms necessary for the publication of student photos.
- Coordinate and execute the School photo to be taken in September each year.
The Room Parent Chair shall:
Section 8: Field Day Chair
- Solicit volunteers for a minimum of one Room Parent per classroom and maintain records (i.e. name, phone, email) to contact these individuals.
- Coordinate and review with the Room Parents their responsibilities; including requesting parental consent forms for student photos and the PTO Directory, supporting the teacher with class parties, coordinating the decoration of Field Day t-shirts, and recruiting parent volunteers to assist at various PTO events.
The Field Day Chair shall:
Section 9: Web Communication Chair
- Assist the Principal and Gym Teacher with the planning and implementing of the School's annual Field Day held each June.
- Purchase student Field Day t-shirts and the paint supplies to decorate them. Coordinate the decoration of the t-shirts with the Room Parents.
The Web Communication Chair shall:
Section 10: Playground Chair
- Work closely with the School Principal to build and maintain the School website.
- Work closely with the Publicity Chair to publicize School events on the website.
The Playground Chair shall:
Section 11: Fifth Grade Activities Chair
- Research and present playground maintenance and improvement plans.
- Work closely with the Fundraising Chair to coordinate fundraising for maintenance and improvements of the School's playground equipment and grounds.
- Purchase equipment, supplies, and services necessary to maintain and improve the playground equipment and grounds as approved (by vote) by the PTO membership.
The Fifth Grade Activities Chair shall:
Section 12: Finance Audit Chairperson
- Coordinate fundraising, end-of-the-year activities, 5th grade yearbook, 5th Grade Gift to the School, and School Gifts to 5th Grade students.
- Report activities of the Fifth Grade Activities Committee to the Executive Board to ensure there are no conflicting programs.
The Finance Audit Committee shall be made up of up to three PTO members that do not currently serve on the Executive Board. The Finance Audit Chair shall audit the financial records of the PTO and prepare a fiscal year-end audit report.
ARTICLE XIII - PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY
Section 1: Rules. The rules contained in Robert's Rules of Order, shall govern the PTO in all cases in which they are applicable and in which they do not conflict with these Bylaws. A copy of these Rules shall be held by the Secretary and be made available at each meeting.
Section 2: Bylaws Committee. A Special committee may be appointed to submit a revised set of Bylaws by majority vote at a regular PTO meeting.
Section 3: Bylaws Amendment. These Bylaws may be amended under the following conditions:
- Either the Bylaws Committee or at least 5 PTO Members shall submit the revision request to the Secretary; and
- At least 14 calendar days prior notice shall be given to the PTO Membership that a vote will be taken at the next scheduled Regular PTO meeting; and
- A quorum is met at the meeting and the revision request is approved by a majority vote of those present.
- All approved amendments shall become effective immediately and recorded by the Secretary.
ARTICLE XIV - DISSOLUTION
Section 1: Dissolution. The PTO may be dissolved provided prior notice is given to the PTO Membership, a vote is taken at the next scheduled Regular PTO meeting (a quorum must be met), and the request is approved by a majority vote of those present.
Section 2: Remaining Funds. Upon a vote to dissolve the PTO, the remaining PTO funds shall first be used to pay any outstanding PTO debt and then either:
- a vote shall be taken by the PTO Membership to spend remaining funds on an item or items that benefit the students; or
- the remaining funds be held in escrow by the Principal for use by a future School PTO. If a PTO is not formed within 24 months, the funds shall revert to the School and be used toward the benefit of the students under the discretion of the Principal.
This document should not be used as a legal reference and may not be all-inclusive. We suggest consulting with the head of your school or any other essential professional.
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